Status: completed October 2020

Under normal circumstances heat energy transfers from a warmer place to a cooler place. Heat pumps can reverse this process by absorbing thermal energy from a colder place and transferring it to a warmer place. The use of heat pumps in Canada has become more prevalent in recent years as they are considered a viable method for heating homes and buildings while reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. In Yukon, geothermal heat pumps are a potential alternative heating source, however there are only two geothermal heat pumps that are known to be currently operating.

In this study, researchers examined the feasibility of a water-to-air geothermal heat pump on the Yukon University campus as a means of reducing the institution’s reliance on fossil fuels for heating. Groundwater will be supplied by a 6-inch well that currently exists on campus. Aquifer testing data and groundwater quality data are considered as well as an ideal location for installation is proposed. Following a review of existing and new data the installation of a geothermal heat pump in a building on campus is recommended, accompanied by a pilot project that monitors fossil fuel consumption and ultimately measures the efficiency of the heat pump.

The report can be made available by contacting David Petkovich. 

Project team

David Petkovich, Instructor, Environmental Monitoring Program, Centre for Northern Innovation in Mining, Yukon University

Mary Samolczyk, Instructor/Coordinator, Earth Sciences Program, School of Science, Yukon University

Dr. Joel Cubley, Chair, School of Science, Yukon University

Sky Pearson, Instructor, Welding, School of Trades, Technology and Mining, Yukon University

Quinn Landreth, Student Researcher, Northern Science, Yukon University


Financial Support for this project was provided by the Yukon University Scholarly Activity Grant